5 Luxury Label Execs Making Big, Bold Statements About Spending


Burberry Spring 2012

A turbulent economy doesn’t spell doom and gloom across the retail board.  We’ve noted before how the high and low ends of the industry seem recession-resilient while the mid-priced tier has its woes — with luxury houses in particular experiencing consistently strong sales.  To that end, their executives have made some pretty buoyant comments on high-end consumer spending (even if they’re occasionally modified by a general sense of concern for the global economy).   Here’s the rundown on which luxury labels are saying what:

1. Hermès - The iconic French house of leather goods sounds as healthy as the horses it saddles. CEO Patrick Thomas told Reuters that “for the moment, there is no impact on our sales,” and that luxury consumers’ ability to spend seemed unchanged.  Of course, we’d be in a good mood, too, had we just successfully fended off a potential LVMH takeover.

2. Salvatore Ferragamo – The CEO of the Italian fashion house, Michele Norsa, was quoted by Bloomberg saying that “the luxury industry is perhaps more resilient now than it was in 2008,” and that “The market is still very positive. Sure, there are some concerns, but we are getting used to being worried.”

3. Burberry – The iconic British brand’s Finance Director, Stacey Cartwright, told reporters today that there is “No evidence of any slowdown.  What we have seen is consistent strong brand momentum and business growth.”

4. Lanvin – Even while remaining “preoccupied by the world macroeconomic situation,” Thierry Andretta, Lanvin’s chief executive, noted that he expected the label to post double-digit growth for 2011.

5. Valentino – Before Valentino’s spring 2012 runway show, chief executive Stefano Sassi said “So far, we have not been affected by the financial turmoil around. So let’s see.“  And with a 25% increase in sales for the first half of 2011, the brand seems to be circumventing any economic trouble.

Meanwhile, the spring 2012 Paris runways were described as upbeat, relaxed, and weightless — not really the qualities one would associate with stormy economic times.  So it’s not just a positive corporate attitude currently reflecting fairly consistent luxury spending — the bright outlook even seems to be making it into the clothes themselves.


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